Jazz Concert and Workshop

On the 22nd May 2024, the Year 10 GCSE Music students had the special opportunity to watch and perform with a group of New York jazz musicians from Jazz At Lincoln Centre (JALC) in partnership with our local music hub, Merton Music Foundation.

The concert featured a set of jazz standards, with reference to their historical and musical context, linking to the GCSE curriculum. Following the concert, the musicians led a workshop and presented an opportunity for students to learn jazz pieces by ear, improvise and then play them through with the professional players. We then had a whole ensemble performance led by the Year 10 GCSE Music students and the New York jazz musicians.

MMF is lucky to have a unique partnership with JALC, the ‘home’ of US jazz, based in New York, set up by the trumpeter, composer and educator Wynton Marsalis. MMF are the only organisation in Europe to be part of JALC’s education programme. JALC returned to the UK to deliver a series of jazz concerts to Merton children, including our Year 10 students at Ricards Lodge. Their players were also supplemented by members of the Blues And Roots Ensemble, enabling our students to gain insight into various instruments and ensembles.

I thoroughly enjoyed the Jazz music trip. It was nice to see how the band had put their own modern spin on classic jazz music. The best part, for me, was actually working with the band and learning from them. They taught us that if you feel the music and enjoy it - you will fully deliver on your performance. If I could, I would do the whole trip again! - Leanne, Year 10